NWCDN Members regularly post articles and summary judgements in workers’ compensations law in your state.
Select a state from the dropdown menu below to scroll through the state specific archives for updates and opinions on various workers’ compensation laws in your state.
Contact information for NWCDN members is also located on the state specific links in the event you have additional questions or your company is seeking a workers’ compensation lawyer in your state.
After decades, the DWC has finally allowed an increase in claimant’s attorney fees from $150/hour to $200/hour for attorneys, and from $50/hour to $65/hour for legal assistants. For any service provided before January 30, 2017, the old rates apply. For services after January 30, 2017, the new rates apply. When applying for fees, separate applications must be submitted for services rendered before and after that date. In addition, billable time allowed for communications per month increased from two hours to three hours per month. For direct dispute resolution negotiation with the other party, allowable time increased from three to three and one-half hours, and for preparation and submission of an agreement or settlement, allowable time increased from one to two hours.
It will be interesting to see whether this increase attracts any additional qualified attorneys to represent claimants before the DWC. Carrier attorney fees are not actually “capped” by the DWC’s rules – the requirement is only that the fees must be “reasonable.” Other states’ attorneys are in the midst of challenging their regulatory agencies’ constitutional authority to regulate attorney fees at all! More on that in later newsletters, but there has not been a constitutional challenge to Texas’ workers’ compensation statute since 1989 when the Texas Supreme Court held in Garcia v. Texas Workers’ Compensation Commission that the newly enacted workers’ compensation act did not violate provisions of the federal and state constitutions.